Law Firm Directory

Browse all firms with extended profiles for Puerto Rico


Despite an April 2023 state of emergency declaration over coastal erosion, anxiety over the Supreme Court’s third invalidation of the current document that governs land use and permits on the island (in March 2023), high inflation and residual fallout from the devastation of Hurricane Fiona, which struck in September 2022, a series of recent developments suggest a more optimistic direction for Puerto Rico’s economic future.

In March 2022, the nation formally exited bankruptcy, following what was reported to be the largest public debt restructuring in US history. Stepping out of the shadow of over $70bn in debt, the country was finally free to repay bondholders, settle approximately $1bn-worth of claims by residents and local businesses, issue over $10bn in bonds and reimburse the public pension system up to $1.3bn.

In March 2023, Governor Pedro Pierluisi, addressing repeated power outages and rising energy costs, announced the approval by the US Federal Emergency Management Agency of microgrid projects to supply the entirety of the power to the islands of Vieques and Culebra, both popular tourist destinations, in addition to an infusion of $100m in federal funds to create a voucher programme to cover up to 30% of the costs of installing battery-backed solar systems in the homes of residents. In early April 2023, the US Environmental Protection Agency announced Puerto Rico would receive $62m in funding to bolster its drinking water infrastructure.

Such steps, combined with the unveiling of a new fiscal plan for a complete overhaul of Puerto Rico’s education, tax and infrastructure sectors by the federal control board that oversees the nation’s finances (in April 2023), a boom in manufacturing and the IMF’s projection of growth of 0.4% in GDP in 2023, indicates an upward economic trend, as reflected by the legal market.

In the corporate, commercial and banking space, respondent firms described a post-pandemic spike in international corporations relocating their operations to Puerto Rico to take advantage of the island’s tax incentives, and also indicated substantial growth in the renewable energy space. In relation to labour and employment, teams described a near-total pivot to job training being conducted virtually. Respondent firms also predict a rise in workplace harassment litigation as employees return to the workplace. In the dispute resolution arena, firms described a rise in climate change-related litigation and a rise in individual bankruptcies. Teams in the real estate, hospitality and leisure sphere predict that rising interest rates will have a seismic impact on the market in 2024. In intellectual property, firms describe a wave of interest in AI, NFTs and the metaverse. Tax teams interviewed continued to see work in the tourism sector (thanks to Puerto Rico’s generous tax exemptions on properties dedicated to tourist activity) and relating to advising high-net-worth individuals encouraged to relocate from the US due to its tax benefits.

In the legal market, full-service firms McConnell Valdés LLC, O’Neill & Borges and Pietrantoni Méndez & Alvarez LLP continue to dominate in most practice areas, although other prominent domestic firms include Ferraiuoli LLC (a vital force in the market in the IP space), Cancio Covas & Santiago LLP, Estrella LLCGoldman Antonetti & Córdova, Reichard & Escalera, Casellas Alcover & Burgos, P.S.C., Marini Pietrantoni Muñiz, LLC and Toro Colón Mullet, P.S.C. (a leader in matters relating to energy, natural resources and the environment). International firms DLA Piper (Puerto Rico) LLC and ECIJA SBGB also have a strong foothold in the market.

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